Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Temple Trees: The Parable of the Three Trees

It isn't very often I blog about the work going on at the new Kansas City Temple or post the photographs I take there.  Cheryl, my co-blogging partner, is doing such a great job of recording all that so I will just buy a copy of the blog book when it is printed.  :) 

I have not found the need to go to the temple as much anymore now that the exterior is finished and their construction efforts have been focused internally.  However, when the sun and clouds seem to be clicking into place in just the right way, I try to listen to the still small voice inside of my heart and go there when I think something pretty will happen. 

A close friend observed to me recently that it was like I am on a "mission" to be the temple photographer.  Perhaps that is truer than I know. 

With the changes in the weather and air to fall, there is more moisture in the sky which in turn is creating some really delicious cloud and light action.  I was there two mornings ago, and the sky was REALLY this red.  This photograph is unedited in anyway.

The landscaping is going forward, and trees are being planted.  As SOON as I saw these three trees, I instantly thought of one of my most favorite children's stories. 

May you enjoy it as well.  Even if you are not a religious person, I think it speaks volumes about how life works and doesn't work out for us.  Enjoy.

The Parable of the Three Trees

Once upon a mountain top, three little trees stood and
dreamed of what they wanted to become when they
grew up.

The first little tree looked up at the stars and said: "I
want to hold treasure. I want to be covered with gold
and filled with precious stones. I'll be the most
beautiful treasure chest in the world!"

The second little tree looked out at the small stream
trickling by on it's way to the ocean. "I want to be
traveling mighty waters and carrying powerful kings.
I'll be the strongest ship in the world!"

The third little tree looked down into the valley below
where busy men and women worked in a busy town.
"I don't want to leave the mountain top at all. I want to
grow so tall that when people stop to look at me,
they'll raise their eyes to heaven and think of God. I
will be the tallest tree in the world."

Years passed. The rain came, the sun shone, and the
little trees grew tall. One day three woodcutters
climbed the mountain.

The first woodcutter looked at the first tree and said,
"This tree is beautiful. It is perfect for me." With a
swoop of his shining axe, the first tree fell. "Now I
shall be made into a beautiful chest, I shall hold
wonderful treasure!" The first tree said.

The second woodcutter looked at the second tree
and said, "This tree is strong. It is perfect for me."
With a swoop of his shining axe, the second tree fell.

"Now I shall sail mighty waters!" thought the second
tree. "I shall be a strong ship for mighty kings!"

The third tree felt her heart sink when the last
woodcutter looked her way. She stood straight and
tall and pointed bravely to heaven.

But the woodcutter never even looked up. "Any kind
of tree will do for me." He muttered. With a swoop
of his shining axe, the third tree fell.

The first tree rejoiced when the woodcutter brought
her to a carpenter's shop. But the carpenter fashioned
the tree into a feedbox for animals.

The once beautiful tree was not covered with gold,
nor with treasure. She was coated with saw dust and
filled with hay for hungry farm animals.

The second tree smiled when the woodcutter took
her to a shipyard, but no mighty sailing ship was made
that day. Instead the once strong tree was hammered and
sawed into a simple fishing boat. She was too small and
too weak to sail to an ocean, or even a river; instead
she was taken to a little lake.

The third tree was confused when the woodcutter cut
her into strong beams and left her in a lumberyard.
"What happened?" The once tall tree wondered. "All
I ever wanted was to stay on the mountain top and point
to God..."

Many many days and nights passed. The three trees
nearly forgot their dreams.

But one night, golden starlight poured over the first tree
as a young woman placed her newborn baby in the

"I wish I could make a cradle for him." her husband
whispered. The mother squeezed his hand and smiled
as the starlight shone on the smooth and the sturdy
wood. "This manger is beautiful" she said.

And suddenly the first tree knew he was holding the
greatest treasure in the world.

One evening a tired traveler and his friends crowded
into the old fishing boat. The traveler fell asleep as
the second tree quietly sailed out into the lake. Soon
a thundering and thrashing storm arose. The little tree
shuddered. She knew she did not have the strength to
carry so many passengers safely through with the wind
and the rain.

The tired man awakened. He stood up, stretched out
his hand, and said, "Peace." The storm stopped as
quickly as it had begun.

And suddenly the second tree knew he was carrying the
king of heaven and earth.

One Friday morning, the third tree was startled when her
beam were yanked from the forgotten woodpile. She
flinched as she was carried through an angry jeering
crowd. She shuddered when soldiers nailed a man's hands
to her.

She felt ugly and harsh and cruel.

But on Sunday morning, when the sun rose and the
earth tremble with joy beneath her, the third tree knew
that God's love had changed everything.

It had made the third tree strong. And every time people
thought of the third tree, they would think of God.

That was better than being the tallest tree in the world.

So next time you feel down because you didn't get what
you want, just sit tight and be happy because God is
thinking of something better to give you ........... Author Unkown